Thursday, April 30, 2009

Travel Tip Thursday – Avoid Getting Sick while Traveling.

I know it’s been forever since I’ve done a Travel Tip Thursday!

My work travel budget got cut significantly, so I’ve been traveling less and having trouble coming up with new topics. But I'm happy to let you know Travel Tip Thursday is back!

With swine flu pandemic panic being the hot topic on the news, I thought I’d focus on how to avoid getting sick while traveling.

People always ask me “since you travel on an airplane a lot, do you get sick a lot?” The answer is “no”. I'm blessed with a good immune system, but I also take a lot of steps to prevent getting sick.

Here are my tips for how to stay healthy while traveling on planes:

  • Pack hand sanitizer. Be sure to bring that comes in size smaller than 3 oz. and put in a plastic ziplock bag, or else you won’t be able to get it through security.
  • The dirtiest place on the plane is that tiny nasty bathroom. Avoid it all costs. Remember to use the restroom right before boarding your flight. I’ve heard that the #1 predictor of getting sick from flying is using that airplane restroom.
  • Avoid the pillows and blankets available on commercial airliners. They have been slept on, sat on, drooled on, and who knows what else, and they are not cleaned enough. Gross. I always pack a pashmina which can be used a blanket or wrap. For longer flights I also bring my own travel pillow (with a pillow case that I can wash later so as not to have to wash the whole pillow).
  • Keep you immune system up. Take vitamins and pro-biotics (like the ones in natural yogurt). DRINK plenty of water. I can’t emphasis this enough. I credit a lot of my good health to drinking at least 60 oz. of water a day. Also make sure you get plenty of sleep the week before traveling. You do not want your body to be run down when it gets exposed to germs.
  • Don’t stress. Stressing about getting sick will just stress your immune system and could cause you to get sick. So take the above precautions and then enjoy your trip.

One timely and quick cautionary story for you: My good friend and her family flew to Japan this week, she just emailed me to tell me about her journey. When they landed in Tokyo, men in hazmat suits boarded their plane and took every person’s temperature (including her 4 month old baby) and checked for signs of illness. If they had found one person with a temperature on that plane they were going to quarantine the whole plane for 72 hours. So if you’re feeling sick and running a temperature right now (even if you know it’s not Swine Flu), please consider changing your travel plans for the sake of others on the plane. I’m sure that given the current situation most airlines would waive the change fee (or if you fly Southwest Airlines there are no change fees!)

Do you all have any more tips for staying healthy while traveling?


Crazy Shenanigans said...

I work in an airport and one of the most germ filled things in the airport can be the gray bins that you put your stuff in to go thru the x-ray. CLEAN YOUR HANDS

Cristina said...

These are fabulous tips!

Lindsey said...

Great tips! My go-to is Airbourne, I take it before I fly and when I get off the plane and haven't gotten sick yet!

My name is Megan... said...

Thanks for the tips! I will be using them as I travel to Mexico next Sunday!!

*~! megs !~* said...

Good tips!! I am that girl that gets sick every single time I fly. I usually blame a kid!!!

Shoshanah said...

I hate to admit it, but I have flown sick before. Its not fun to do, for me or anyone else who was on the plane with me. Thankfully, there wasn't a flu pandemic going on then

Sarah said...

Those are some great tips!! Thanks for sharing!! Don't forget to hydrate!! :)

Tara Gibson said...

great tips! Flying sick is not fun... I have flown with a cold and had HORRIBLE airplane ear.. it hurt so bad!

a H.I.T. said...

60 oz of water a day! And here I thought I was being good drinking 40 oz :)

These are great tips - thank you! Especially with my trip coming up in 2 weeks.

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